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Brand Thinking Blog
Posted on May 14, 2012 at 9:00 am
When my mother died two years ago, I hardly thought about it at all. I was busy with the arrangements and, frankly, done with the process of dying. It takes its toll. Caretakers are getting more sympathy for their troubles recently but the emphasis is and, should be, on the passing life. Lately, I have been thinking about her a lot. Not that I’ll admit that to my kids, who weren’t firmly attached to her because she was a Post-It Note in their lives. That was my unapologetic mom. Some people just stand apart, either because life conspires against them or because they don’t have the requisite skills for undulating relationships, or both. But she had an outsized impact on me, her son, because the goal of her life—as a highly regarded interior designer, as a gardener, and as a volunteer was to spread beauty, like Janie Appleseed, across everything she touched.
Except people. Like I intimated earlier, people were not her strong suit. If you study the body of her work, you’ll find glorious ephemera that changed people’s lives in a different way. Not directly through the relationship but indirectly through art. Rooms that inspired confidence. Gardens that provided comfort. Conversations that excited. It’s true, a few got inside the fence, but not many. I was one. Not always a cheery moment, but a privilege, nonetheless.
A note to all marketers–you have been shaped by someone, a person whose trust you gave totally; often the province of family, but not always. That person has influenced who you are today, who you’ve become. That person’s worth a call. It’s prepaid. You’re already drawing a check for the gift.
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